Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Grilled Shrimp Salad with Rice Pilaf

This salad is one of my favorites for summer. As I have mentioned I grew up with a mother that cooked all of the time, and this is one of her recipes that has stuck with me and I hope that you enjoy it too!!!

Cherry Tomatoes
Kalamata Olives
Feta Cheese
Rice Pilaf
Lemon Juice

First get the rice pilaf cooking since it takes 20-25 minutes which is the same amount of time the remainder of the meal will take.
Next cut up cherry tomatoes, cucumber, olives and feta cheese and place in a bowl.
Slice up the peppers to be grilled with shrimp.
Next add shrimp and peppers to grill pan to cook.
Once the peppers are cooked, cut them up and add to bowl with remainder of the salad. 
Toss the salad with dressing of EVOO and lemon juice. You do not need to heavily dress this salad as the vegetables have a ton of flavor.
Once the rice pilaf is cooked add a spoonful to the middle of a plate and top with salad and grilled shrimp.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Don’t just eat it, Wear it!!!

Fresh produce is great not only when you eat them, but when you wear them too!!! Below are a few recipes that I have enjoyed and wanted to share with you. 
Avocados Dry Hair? Watch your hair go from brittle to silky soft, and add a great shine. Treat your scalp and hair with the nutrients they deserve. Try out this recipe. Dry Skin? Face masks are a great way to clean pores, help with acne, and soothe dry skin. So whether you had a few too many hours in the sun or out in the cold slather this recipe on for a nice hydrating treat. 

Green Onions – Swollen Feet? Boil the whole green onion for a few minutes. Grind it and mix with a little water just enough to make a paste, and then place it to the swollen part of your feet. Stuffy Nose? Mash the green onion and make wet cotton with its juice. Place the wet cotton to your nose. Trouble Sleeping? Believe it or not, if you cannot sleep well, just place a bundle of green onion beside your pillow. 

Radishes – Acne Outbreak? The common garden radish, and in particular, their seeds, contains a bleaching agent making it a wonderful natural acne remedy by helping to remove blackheads and freckles. Try out this recipe.
Tomatoes – Out of radishes and having an Acne Outbreak?  Not to worry, tomatoes possesses high levels of vitamins C and A, antioxidants and acidic content. These elements are especially useful when treating acne. Try out this recipe.

Strawberries Dead Skin?  Strawberries contain alpha-hydroxy acid, which is a great exfoliate and gently gets rid of dirt and dead skin. Try out this recipe. Massaging the mask, with the strawberry seeds, is a great natural way to exfoliate your skin.

Cucumbers – Puffy Eyes?  Since cucumbers are more than 90 percent composed of water, they have a hydrating effect. So cut up a few slices and sit back and relax. 

Do you have any favorite do it yourself at home beauty remedies?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Superfoods Part IX

Last week I mentioned three summer superfoods. Even though it is not feeling like summer in New York right now I am hoping that this post will make the sun start shining. Here are three more superfoods to add to your diet this summer.

Raspberries – I have talked about Strawberries, Blueberries and Blackberries and now it is time to learn the benefits of Raspberries. This berry is full of antioxidants, anticarcinogenics, and antimicrobials hitting the trifecta of superoods. Raspberries are high in the trace mineral manganese, which supports an active metabolism. At less than 100 calories a cup, these berries provide a third of your daily requirement for fiber.
How to prepare: I like to add them to a smoothie, add them to granola or yogurt for breakfast add to a salad for some flavor as a dressing, or just eat them buy the handful; however you eat these you can’t go wrong.

Asparagus – Also known to me as my mother’s favorite vegetable, asparagus has many health benefits. At only 40 calories per cup, asparagus contain 288 milligrams of potassium as well as 3 grams of fiber which aids in cleansing the digestive system. Asparagus is also rich in potassium, vitamin A, and folate which gives it anti-aging functions, aids in protecting against cancer, reducing pain and inflammation, reducing risk of heart disease as well as birth defects. Asparagus also contains vitamin K which can help prevent osteoporosis and osteoarthritis.
How to prepare: Roast them, grill them, sauté them, add them to a salad, whatever you do eat them. Grill them and squeeze some lemon on top for a healthy snack or add them to a salad or entrée.

Watermelon – Not only does this juice quench your thirst, but it also taste great and a full cup of watermelon contains only 46 calories, and contains plenty of vitamin C and A as well minerals and nutrients said to help fight inflammation that contributes to conditions like asthma, atherosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer, and arthritis. Pink watermelon is also a source of the potent carotenoid antioxidant, lycopene. These powerful antioxidants travel through the body neutralizing free radicals. Free radicals are substances in the body that can cause a great deal of damage.
How to prepare: A great treat on a warm summer day or even on a cold day indoors, watermelon is one of my favorite fruits. I have recently started to add into smoothies, I love to eat watermelon alone and it is great in a salad with peaches and feta cheese!

Be sure to check out my past Super Food Entries:

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Farmer's Market - Part III

This week I bring you 3 items from Phillips Farms based in Milford, NJ and brought straight to the Union Square Farmer's Market. 

The weather has not been so pleasant in New York so I thought I would go get some bright vegetables and greens that are filled with flavor and can add to any dish whether it be a salad or a fish entree. 

Scallions - Also knows as a green onion, its medicinal part is its stem. It works as well as an antipyretic, expectorant, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal. It is effective against colds, headaches, chills to the stomach, indigestion, and also for insomnia. The white stem contains a lot of glucose and allyl sulfides. Use it is a raw condiment to many foods by finely chopping the fresh white stem.

Radishes – These vegetables are rich in folic acid, Vitamin C and anthocyanins. These nutrients make it a very effective cancer-fighting food. It is said that radish is effective in fighting oral cancer, colon cancer and intestinal cancer as well as kidney and stomach cancers. Radishes contain Vitamin C, zinc, B-complex vitamins and phosphorus. All of these are very effective in treating skin disorders such as rashes and dry skin. Dieters can benefit greatly from radishes, as they are low in calories, cholesterol and fat. They also contain a lot of roughage and contain a lot of water. Because of its high roughage content, it is also very useful in treating both piles and constipation. Radish juice helps to soothe the digestive system and detoxify the body. Radish may also relieve congestion within the respiratory system, making it an excellent food for asthmatics and those who suffer from bronchial infections and sinus problems. It is beneficial for both the gallbladder and liver functions, as it acts as a cleanser. It contains sulphur based chemicals, which regulate the production and flow of bilirubin and bile, enzymes and acids and also help remove excess bilirubin from the blood. This makes it an excellent detoxifying agent for the body. It protects and soothes the gallbladder and liver, while protecting them from infections and so much more. 

Chives - All alliums contain iron, and vitamins and Chives are no different. They have high levels of vitamins K, C and A as well as packed with essential minerals such as potassium, calcium, folic acid. They are reputedly mildly antibiotic. Chives, chopped and sprinkled on food, are said to aid digestion and stimulate appetite.  Since Chives are not generally eaten in large quantities, one serving of chives is considered to be only 1 tablespoon (3 grams). Probably the most prominent vitamin contained in chives is vitamin K (8% of daily recommended amount per serving) followed by vitamins A and C (3% each). Calcium is the most prominent mineral with 2.8 mg.

Now go add these ingredients to a dish and see how much flavor they offer. Need a recipe idea? Try out this Vegetable Salad with Creamy Dressing.

Past Entries:

Monday, May 23, 2011

Simple Summer Salad

I have written about this salad in the past, but I wrote about my "easy to-go" version. Today I bring you the "fancier" version.

Apple, Avocado and Shrimp Salad
Serving Size 2

2 Granny Smith Apples
1.5 Avocados
12 Large Shrimp
1/4 cup Panko Bread Crumbs
1 tbsp EVOO

Rinse apples and dice into 1/4 inch cubes. Place in bowl and slice avocados into 1/4 inch cubes and add to bowl with apples. Cover apple and avocado with saran wrap and let sit.
Next take the cleaned shrimp and place them in a bowl and coat with bread crumbs. 
Heat pan and add EVOO. Once pan is hot add in shrimp and sauté.
Once shrimp are cooked fully through add into the bowl of apple and avocado and serve immediately.

SP Cleanse - Days 16-21

Well the cleanse is officially over!!! I have consumed pounds and pounds of fruits and vegetables, come up with new smoothie favorites as well as new salad recipes.

All in all the SP Cleanse has been a success both my first and second times around. I feel great and I am fitting into pants that felt tight prior to the cleanse which is a nice addition to the extra shine in my hair. 

This cleanse was also at an ideal time for me (aside to doing it prior to bathing suit season, which of course was part of the reason I was doing it at this time) on the positive side it got me going to the Union Square Farmer's Market a whole lot more then before. I have now tried many vegetables that I ever new existed such as Tatsoi and Sunflower Greens and I also learned how to prepare vegetables such as Kale and Bok Choy and many more. 

This week I will slowly be adding eliminated foods back into my diet. It is important not to overload on foods that I was unable to eat on the cleanse. I will continue drinking smoothies for breakfast making salads for lunch and eating fish with vegetables for dinner as well as snacks throughout the day.

I will definitely be doing this cleanse again in 6-9 months. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Farmer's Market - Part II

The rain and humidity can't stop my trip to the Farmer's Market. I know I have mentioned the benefits of Kale before but today I would like to talk about two specific types of Kale which I picked up at Bodhitree Farm stand.

If you have been reading my blog you know I love Kale; I toss it in smoothies, add it to pasta dishes, and make it into chips and more. Below are two types of Kale which I picked up today:

Tuscan Kale – This Kale has a deep, earthy and nutty flavor and is often referred to as the Italian Variety. Like all kales, Tuscan is extraordinarily nutritious: a cup provides more than 100 percent of the daily value (DV) of vitamins K and A, and 88 percent of the DV for vitamin C. Tuscan Kale is a rich source of organosulfur compounds that have been linked to cancer prevention.

Russian Kale – This Kale is the sweetest and mildest Kale with no bitterness (great for a smoothie addition). Similar to Tuscan Kale and other forms of Kale it is loaded with vitamin A, B complex, and C. It is also a powerful antioxidant. One portion of kale is equal to just about 36 calories and can fulfill your Vitamin A needs for the entire day. It is also rich in beta carotene and enhances vision. It is also a rich source of minerals like copper, calcium, iron, and manganese, high in dietary fiber and contributes to effective weight loss. Kale is also an anti-inflammatory and prevents skin diseases

How to Prepare: Use it in a salad, add it to a smoothie, sauté with some EVOO and garlic or add to a pasta dish. Some recipes I have made are Whole Wheat Pasta with Anchovies and Kale, Smoothies with Kale, Tilapia and Cockles with Kale and Cherry Tomatoes, Sausage with Israeli Cous Cous and Vegetables, Grilled Chicken and Kale Salad, Kale Chips

What is your favorite Kale dish?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Superfoods Part VIII

This week I am going to write about three of my favorite foods I can’t believe I have yet to write about. With summer just around the corner these three Superfoods are in full bloom and packed with nutrients, antioxidants and vitamins.

1. Strawberries – Given their unique combination of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients, it's not surprising to see strong research support for strawberry health benefits in three major areas: first is cardiovascular support and prevention of cardiovascular diseases, second is improved regulation of blood sugar, with decreased risk of type 2 diabetes, and lastly prevention of certain cancer types including breast, cervical, colon, and esophageal cancer. This little fruit is an excellent source of vitamin C, manganese, has a great amount of dietary fiber and iodine, and they are a good source of potassium, folate, vitamin B2 (riboflavin), vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), vitamin K, magnesium, and copper                .
How to Prepare: I add these delicious fruits to smoothies every day, they are a great addition to a salad with grilled chicken and mixed greens and are also just great to snack on alone.

2. Avocados – This high absorbing food has a wide variety of benefits ranging from anti-inflammatory through nutrients such as  phytosterols, carotenoid antioxidants, as well as non-carotenoid antioxidants including vitamins C and E, and the minerals manganese, selenium, and zinc,  omega-3 fatty acids and polyhydroxylated fatty alcohols (PSA)s. The avocado is high in Carotenoids which aid in food absorption. They also aid in promoting a healthy heart, supporting cardiovascular health, promoting blood sugar regulation, and also has cancer prevention benefits.
How to Prepare: I add avocados to all of my salads; it pairs well with chili, what is better than guacamole in the summer? What is your favorite avocado recipe?

3. Peaches – This delicious seasonal fruit is high in fiber and in Vitamins A, C, and E. Unlike most fruits, they contain calcium. They can help ease dry coughs and relieve constipation. One medium peach provides only about 50 calories, less than the 60 calories in a medium apple.
How to Prepare: I enjoy adding these to my smoothies in the summer as well as making salads. One of my personal favorites; Peach, Watermelon, Basil and Feta Cheese

Be sure to check out my past Super Food Entries:

Monday, May 16, 2011

Next Stop, Health Coach

It is May in New York and the flowers are blooming, so shouldn't my career be?

While I have been out of work I have had many conversations with people who have graduated or are currently enrolled at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. I had heard about the program this past September and while I was interested it just did not seem feasible to me at the time and instead I enrolled in both a Introduction to Nutrition and Health and Stress Management class. I am happy to say I received A's in both classes
I am a believer that things happen for a reason, and while the reason I may no longer be at my last job is not the greatest it has opened my eyes back up to the IIN program. With that being said, I ENROLLED!!!!!!! Don't worry I won't be ignoring A Hint of Greens or my job search for that matter, I just had to take a few days to get acclimated with the IIN website. 
Today was my 1st official day of class and I could not be more excited about the experiences I will have throughout the next year. I can’t wait for the opportunity to help others and give back to my community through health and wellness.

Let me know if you have done this program, or are currently enrolled I would love to hear what other people have to say!!!

SP Cleanse - Days 11 - 15

While I had hoped to post each day of the SP Cleanse I did not want to bore you with the details of each smoothie I have had and all of the salads I have been eating. Don't worry any recipe worth sharing I am have either shared such as Mixed Green Salad with Tilapia and Clementine’s, and I will be posting further recipes.

The past 5 days were definitely tough. The gym, no problem! I try and go to a body sculpt class a day, and if I have time for more then I add that in as well. Between the SP Cleanse, working out and looking for a job my days seem to be much more filled then I thought they would be.

Food on the other hand, not as easy as the gym, I am able to have my smoothies but I do enjoy having a social life so the weekends can be tough.

Friday night my friends Nikki and Brian decided to have a small BBQ to celebrate our friend Chrissy’s Birthday. Two words: Food Coma. There was chicken, lamb, sausage, turkey burgers, shrimp, guacamole, grilled vegetables and my guilty pleasure rainbow cookies (thanks Mario). Well I did the best I could. I had a turkey burger that had diced peppers and onions inside and instead of using ketchup which would be unnecessary sugar I decided to top my burger with guacamole and had some salsa on the side.

Saturday was a good day for food, likely because I decided to have a lazy day of catching up on emails, learning the IIN website (post to come on IIN)I had my two smoothies, a big salad for lunch, I decided to have my Mixed Green Salad with Tilapia and Clementine’s since I enjoyed it so much earlier this week, and for dinner I had a piece of grilled chicken with vegetables.
Sunday I met up with my friends Aly and Nikki for a workout at NYHRC and then we headed over to Le Pain Quotidien. I have to admit I have never been there before and I was pleasantly surprised. While the prices are not the cheapest the food is fantastic. The three of us split the Six Vegetable Quiche with Buckwheat crust (gluten and dairy free) and only 320 calories (Thank you chain restaurants for posting calories. Aly went on to have a Spinach and Goat Cheese Frittata, Nikki the Tuscan White Bean & Prosciutto, and I had the Smoked Atlantic Salmon with roasted beets on a bed of arugula. Everything was fantastic! We were each satisfied and left feeling as fit as after we left the gym.
Sunday night I headed to my parents for dinner with my mom. Neither of us felt like cooking so we ordered in some food from Tiramisu. I had the Tropical Salad with Avocado, Hearts of Palm, and Tomato to start along with a piece of grilled salmon with sautéed spinach. It was delicious and even better because I had leftovers for lunch today.

And here we are all caught up and back to Monday. I decided to skip the gym today. I was sore from my workout yesterday and I wanted to be sure I got my work for IIN completed before I had to run errands. I started the day with a smoothie (strawberry, raspberry, pear, kale) and then did a few hours of work. For lunch I decided to make a salad with my leftovers from dinner last night. After that I ran out for some errands. Upon returning home I stopped at a fruit stand and got PEACHES!!!!! I headed home, made a smoothie (Strawberry, Raspberry, Peach, Pear) and sat down to apply for some jobs.  
Well I have 6 days to go on the cleanse and already I am feeling less groggy, my head is clearer, I am less tired in the morning, and I keep hearing how great my hair and skin look (I have not changed any products since starting the cleanse) so I attribute my shiny hair to the fruits and vegetables.

I will keep you posted on my remaining 6 days and stay tuned for a post on new life happenings.